I just want to get this straight. I live in the real Orange County. Not the Orange County with the multi-million dollar houses. I don't live behind a locked gate, sipping vodka martinis in a hot tub. I haven't had any "work" done, besides the standard semi-exercise to keep my butt from sagging to my knees. I like yoga, and I flirt with Pilates, and I suck at karate, but don't have a personal trainer, and certainly not one with a six-pack named Del or Hans or Antony. I own a scale, but I never look at it. I would rather poke out an eye than to let anyone near my face with a syringe full of toxin, image bedamned.
I am not a Lady of Leisure. The only ones I lunch with are the ones who are in my charge. I have three kids, and they keep me hopping. I load my own dishwasher, and can't rationalize paying someone else to clean the hair out of my tub when I am home all day. (if you want to, that's cool, I just have that liberal guilt thing that plagues me). I don't play tennis, or belong to a country club. My big night out is dinner and a movie with my software-engineer husband.
I realize this kills the Dream for some of you. Watching The O.C. as they prance on the beach makes you believe that we all live that way. Sorry to disappoint. I don't surf. In fact, my children barely swim. I own a pass for the beach but hardly ever get there. It's only twenty minutes away, but it might as well be fifty miles. Life is busy. I drive my paid-for minivan to the grocery store and to ballet and to karate. We live in a little 50's ranch house small but cozy. We budget. Tonight for dinner? Hot dogs. So much for the romance, eh? I do live five minutes from The Happiest Place on Earth, and we have annual passes, so that has to count for something. But it isn't what you envision.
If you ever saw Bravo airing "The Real Housewives of Orange County" then you saw someone's fantasy, and definitely not my reality, or that of my friends. Recently I watched a rerun, and I snorted and guffawed my way thorough it. It was ridiculous, it was a train wreck; it was entertainment. Reality is is reality, and television is television. But reality television is not reality.Laguna Beach is an great little bedroom arts community, not a hotbed of immorality for teens. And I have no idea where "The Hills" even are.
Just remember...When you watch Supernanny or Wife Swap or The Real Housewives of Orange County or Atlanta or wherever the hell they are this season…keep in mind . It's not real life for 98% of the people you know. Being a fly on the wall in my real life, well you wouldn't really believe it. No one could write it, and you would not want to watch it. Trust me. Just thought you should know.
T, who really does drive a minivan, probably older than yours (2001)
picture of my girls taken by my friend, Bobbie Schafer